View Full Version : Rant--Bad Yoga Instructor

Bad JuJu
01-31-2007, 07:32 PM
So I decided to take the plunge and take some yoga classes at the local junior college's continuing ed division. I haven't been in a yoga class for maybe 3 years and boy, do I need it. I even talked two neighbors into going along.

Our first class was this afternoon and was it ever bad! The instructor never even introduced herself, didn't seem to have a plan, but just leafed through a yoga book (that anyone could've picked up at a local bookstore), choosing groups of poses to do, without any apparent structure (no apparent organization according to sitting poses, standing poses, etc.). In addition, her 9-year-old daughter sat in one front corner of the room and occasionally commented loudly, asked questions, and generally made a nuisance of herself. Now I'm as understanding as anyone about the problems of finding good after-school child care, but I paid for this class and now have to try to hear the instructor over the commentary of her child.

The icing on the cake is that we began with corpse pose--every other yoga class I ever took ended with it. Weird.

Guess I'll be calling to drop that class tomorrow. I'm intensely disappointed. Well, thanks for listening to the rant. Anybody else have such a bad experience with yoga instructors?

Running Mommy
01-31-2007, 07:56 PM
Not yoga, but spinning! The one and only class I took at my new gym (lifetime fitness- not mom and pop place) was HORRIBLE!! I know the guy was just filling in, but it was actually BORING! And I barely kicked up a sweat.
I just hate that!
But I must say I've had good luck with the pilates classes they have. Both instructors are very good.
I feel your pain though. Like I said... UGH! :cool:

01-31-2007, 08:34 PM
wow, what a drag! But I had a bad experience too. This woman was running the yoga shop for a while, she owned it, she was a bit of a prima donna, so I enrolled in classes with some more humble teachers. One day I got her when my regularly scheduled instructor couldn't make it. She had a fat yappy dog who barked at people!!! and instead of getting her dog, she continued to yak at someone while her dog was harrassing ME! I later discovered that she took this dog to class always and it stayed in the room....
No, i didn't think it was a cute dog.
Then, a few weeks later (or before, i forget the sequence) she got an email saying that if you forwarded your name and address to Microsoft "with this email" you'd get thousands of dollars, and she emailed it to every single client of the yoga school!!!! That was beyond tacky..

Dogs or 9 year olds; which are worse?

I have had some excellent yoga instructors too. I hope you find one.

01-31-2007, 11:39 PM
Just last week I had one of the worst yoga classes ever in my life at my local gym. Now, before I tell you about this guy, I'll say that I have actually had some amazing gym yoga teachers that really knew their stuff. You occasionally have to bypass the few aerobics instructors who took a weekend seminar, but... anyway, for the most part I've had good luck.

So I show up a few minutes late and I'm not entirely sure of the schedule. Peering into the room through the glass door I'm thinking "wait a sec, this must be the wrong class... that doesn't look like yoga, it looks more like... boot camp?" He was leading people through drills of push ups and crunches, thinly disguised as yoga. I have a bad feeling about it but figure I'm there and I'm dressed and I might as well go in and burn some calories off.

I go in and now I get to hear the audio that goes along with this class. Background music is Pink Floyd best hits, I'm guessing it's his own personal mix CD. Now, I like Pink Floyd, but... I would have chosen different songs. Doing yoga to "Brick in the Wall" is just plain weird. He's wearing street clothes and shoes, not actually doing any yoga poses himself, and he's basically barking at everyone "c'mon! breathe! in! out! feel it! dig it!"

I tried to ignore him and just get into some pose sequences, but they were horribly arranged and his timing was stilted. Nothing flowed. He actually went as far as to try and pit one side of the room against the other in a competition, goading us to hold the poses as long as we could. Finally it ended and we entered corpse pose for the meditation. Which basically consisted of weird stoner ramblings. Actually, it went really well with the Pink Floyd music.

The kicker came at the end when he got on his little soapbox about what a poor starving yoga teacher he was and how he was selling these yoga calendars and if we could just find it in our hearts to buy one... :eek:

02-01-2007, 05:30 AM
I just wanted to make a few comments, since I'm a yoga instructor...

starting with corpse pose is not uncommon. I do it sometimes, getting people grounded and to connect with their bodies...but NOT to relax. I cue them to go through their bodies and figure out which parts might need some attention. also sometimes for some breathing exercises.

OMG, puppies and kids into class! Yikes! that's a big no no.

Quality from instructors comes with experience. It took many years to get where I am, and lots of reading and researching. I plan out my classes and have a "cheat sheet" because its very easy to forget your plan while trying to correct postures of your participants. But to bring a book? :eek:

i also plan out, believe it or not, what i am going to say, how to cue the relaxing component, and what i want my participants to experience.

Failing to plan is planning to fail. this is my philosophy with pretty much everything.

Sorry to hear about everyone's experiences. I hope no one says that about me! :(



Bad JuJu
02-01-2007, 08:10 AM
To everyone, but especially han-grrl, I hasten to add that I've had some excellent yoga instruction in my life, and only hope I can find that again.

Re-thinking about my experience last night, my main problems were, of course, the nagging child, but maybe more so, the obvious lack of a plan. I certainly understand that no one is born as a yoga instructor and it takes time and practice to get good at it. But anyone who knows a little something about their discipline can make at least a rudimentary lesson plan. I'm a teacher myself, and I've been teaching for more than 12 years now, but still, I would never go into class without a plan--even if it's just some scribbled notes to help me stay on track.

Bottom line: I adore doing yoga, and yes, I can do it at home, and I would do that, but I'm not knowledgeable and disciplined enough to really challenge myself. So, the search continues..... *sigh*